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Roadrunners capture Conference USA distance medley relay crown on Friday

Courtesy: UTSA Athletics
Release: 03/01/2014
Courtesy UTSA Athletics
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — UTSA's distance medley relay won the program's first-ever Conference USA title on Friday and the Roadrunners are in second place after five scored events at this weekend's league indoor meet.

The quartet of Nina Herrera, Evelyn Clark, Grace Williamson and Emily Perez passed the baton in 11:39.86 for the 58th individual/relay conference championship in school annals, 16 of which have come under the direction of sixth-year head coach Aaron Fox. The forusome edged Tulsa by nearly three seconds for the program's seventh all-time league crown in the event and fourth in the last six years.

UTSA racked up 25 points during the opening day of the meet and it trails only East Carolina, which scored 29, in the team standings.

The Roadrunners received eight points from Ernestine Cray following her runner-up performance in the long jump. The senior from San Antonio broke the sand in 19-5 ½ (5.93m) on her fourth attempt of the afternoon and she finished four inches behind Louisiana Tech's Charla Craddock.

Isabel Balbontin contributed five tallies to the team total with her school-record, fourth-place effort in the first running event of the meet, the 5,000 meters. The senior from Katy circled the Birmingham CrossPlex banked oval 25 times in 16:55.14 to break Alyssa Diaz's previous standard of 17:07.32 by more than eight seconds.

UTSA's other points of the day came from Venessa Onwuchekwa in the pentathlon. The junior from Mansfield scored a personal-record 3,381 points (No. 5 performance in program annals) en route to seventh place.

The Roadrunners also saw four of their athletes advance to the running finals, including three in the 800m (Herrera/Stephanie Wangui/Williamson).

The two-day meet will conclude on Saturday.

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